An unimaginable loss

THE devastating fire that engulfed a dormitory in Mahdia, Region Eight, claiming the lives of 19 innocent children, has left the nation reeling in grief and despair. As the nation mourns this unimaginable loss, it is crucial that we rally together as a community and focus our efforts on providing trauma relief and support to those affected.

In this time of collective sorrow, it is essential for politicians to resist the urge to politicise this tragedy and instead work hand in hand for the betterment of our society.

The Mahdia school fire was not just an isolated incident; it was a profound tragedy that shook the core of our nation.
The loss of 19 young lives is an indescribable pain that will leave a lasting impact on their families, friends, and the entire community. As we come to terms with this heart-wrenching reality, it becomes imperative to prioritise the mental and emotional well-being of the survivors and all those affected.

Trauma relief assistance must be swiftly provided to those grappling with the aftermath of this incident. Counselling services, support groups, and specialised care should be made available to help survivors cope with their grief, trauma, and potential survivor’s guilt.

Our government, NGOs, and individuals from all walks of life should join forces to create a comprehensive system of care that addresses the unique needs of those affected by this tragedy.

President, Dr. Irfaan Ali, during a visit to Mahdia on Monday, said: “I asked everyone here this morning to be kind to the family members. Let us give the family members an opportunity to talk to us. I’d like to assure you, all of you, that no efforts will be spared. Every conceivable help, assistance, and action that is required of government will be taken. We will support, and we will ensure that we are with you not only today but through this difficult path ahead.”

He affirmed that as they awaited the full report from the preliminary investigation of the fire, counselling and psychological support services are being provided to those who are struggling to cope.

“We have already made arrangements for those who are discharged to be accommodated with their parents. We are trying to see how we can get the necessary expertise from around the Caribbean region, to come in as quickly as possible to support us in the identification of our children. This is beyond a tragedy. It is very difficult for us all,” President Ali said.

There has already been an outpouring of support from the international community and regional partners.
Tragedies have the power to unite communities like nothing else. The pain felt by the families who lost their loved ones in the Mahdia fire is shared by the entire nation. In this dark hour, we must unite as one, transcending political affiliations and personal agendas.

Let us remember the lives lost by honouring their memory through tangible actions. Let us extend a helping hand to the survivors, their families, and the affected community, ensuring that they receive the support they need to heal. Let us work together to prevent future tragedies by prioritising the safety and well-being of our children.

We must remain vigilant against the temptation to politicise this tragedy. Our politicians, especially those in the opposition, have a responsibility to prioritise unity and collaboration over political maneuvering.
Let us rally as a nation, standing shoulder to shoulder, as we navigate this painful journey of recovery.

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